By Abu Ahmed Farid
Over the past four weeks, more than half a million ethnic Rohingya Muslims have been forced to flee Arakan to escape the campaign of violence, killing and burning unleashed by the Burmese army against innocent women, elders and children,
Thousands of Rohingya arrived in Bangladesh with miserable boats, under the darkness of the night,through mountains and rivers; a journey that are life threatening, bringing with them hundreds of sad stories of Buddhist brutality, murder and destruction against unarmed civilians.
According to a report by CNN correspondent Ben Westcott, the forced Rohingya migration is the fastest migration from one country since the 1994 genocide in Rwanda.
According to the Rohingya activist and media, this crisis, which began on August 25, 2017, is the final chapter of the Rohingya suffering under Myanmar’s Buddhist government. The history of the Rohingya predicament dates back to the pre-independence of Burma from Great Britain, in which Burma tried by all ways and means to distort the history of Rohingya’s existence in the country and erase the remaining sights and symbols of Islamic culture, heritage and the Muslim identity of the people of Arakan state,
Rohingya Muslims have been facing all these campaigns of repression and persecutions for more than 75 years patiently and peacefully, demanding their deserved rights and ownership of the land with dialogue and discussion,
Today, in this last chapter of the book of ethnic cleansing (as described by the UN secretary-general of the current crisis), Rohingya was paid for its patience and peacefulness throughout that period by the killing of thousands of its members, displacing thousands, burning its villages and homes with its inhabitants and forcing them to leave their homes for shelters and camps that lacked the simplest basic amenities for them to get on with life.
There are thousands in the list of missing persons and thousands of orphans, widows, elderly and wounded waiting for assistance, treatment and care,
According to sources of Rohingya Media, the ongoing campaign of ethnic cleansing and genocide, until the writing of this article,resulted in following:
1 – More than 7500 innocent people were killed in a brutal manner and the bodies of many of them were burned or hidden.
- – 70% of the Muslim villages were destroyed by fire and demolition, looting of their contents and seizure of their lands.
- – The mass rape of hundreds of women, girls and minors and their murder,
- – More than 500,000 people were forced to migrate to Bangladesh to escape the brutality of the army and Buddhist mercenaries cooperating with the army.
- – All the possessions of jewelry, money and cattle were confiscated from the migrants.
- – More than 35,000 children are without their parents and are guardian-less,
Rohingya- a dark present and an unknown future:
In the light of these current dangerous developments in Arakan state of Myanmar, Rohingya and its activists in various quarters tried to draw the attention of the world to its current crisis and to force the authorities in Burma to stop the violence and excessive force practiced against innocent civilians. However, the international community and its statements and denunciations have not been effective in the face of the Burmese army.
The government of Burma and its agents continue their campaign of ethnic cleansing against Rohingya in many parts of the state and villagers continue to flee towards the border.
There are large numbers of Rohingya most of them women and children trapped in forests and rugged areas amidst harsh inhumane conditions.
In Bangladesh, where the conditions of the camps and shelters are worsening, the inhumane situation continues despite the demand of UNHCR to redouble humanitarian efforts and respond urgently to the needs of refugees.
With the onset of the rainy and typhoon season in the country, begin another difficult journey for the Rohingya refugees in the so-called camps.Already tormented by overcrowding, with no money to buy proper tents, they are forced to seek shelter from the rain, the cold and the heat of sun inmakeshift “tents” made out of branches of trees covered with black plastic bags.
Health conditions are indescribable with noteven first aid medical supply let alone clinics or doctors.
Harmful diseases are spreading quickly, especially among the vulnerable groups of children, the elderly and women.
Problems of pure water supply and proper common toilets are paralyzing the lives of refugees in the camps, and Rohingya children and students wait out these dark days,uncertain if they will be able to continue their studies in the near future.
And throughout all these, lies the hopes of these refugees, between returning to the homeland and surviving this destiny of the unknown.
Challenges of another kind:
Other challenges that have not been taken into account by any of the parties involved in the affairs of the refugees are their security and morality, ailments that are difficult to prescribe.
According to reports published in the local newspapers and television channels, weeks ago, groups of human traffickers and smugglers are taking advantage of the refugees trapped in the rhythm of their current situation. They are dealt like merchandise, sorted according to age and gender and are handed over to various parties for a price.
According to these reports, the Bangladeshi police dealt with such cases after receiving complaints from the people of the region and the refugees themselves.
Cases of inhuman abuses of Rohingya children and women are on the increase especially at the hands of local drug dealers and sex traders.
In this heart breaking inhumane apocalypse, our appeal to world humanity is to share some of our pain even if just through spreading our stories and news.
[Note: View expressed here do not reflect Rohingya Vision’s Editorial Policy]